It's Fair trade Month!

Our Story

The Backstory

Almost 20 years ago, Zambian Canadian eco-entrepreneur, Dan Ball went into a remote part of Africa to help two dozen struggling beekeepers sell their honey. He said, “I can help you, let’s start a business.” Today Dan has trained over 6000 beekeepers and exports 800 tonnes of honey every year to Europe.

But Dan had a problem; with a growing list of 3000 people waiting to be trained and equipped as beekeepers, he needed to generate more income. So he turned to long-time friends, Canadian artist-entrepreneurs and former Zimbabwean residents, Paul Whitney and Liz Connell, “Help me value add our honey,” he said, help me bring it to Canada and the US.”  

Dan Ball and Forest Fruits Ltd.

The Story of the African Bronze Honey Project

With virtually no retail or grocery sales experience, Paul and Liz decided it was time to think outside the box; maybe even design a new box. In 2012 they launched the African Bronze Honey Project to bring the honey to Canadian schools as a fundraising project. The Project is an innovative, healthy and educational way for school kids to learn about some of the issues rural Africans face while earning substantial fundraising dollars for their own school projects. Students learn a valuable lesson with every bottle sold.

The African Bronze Honey Project sets aside a percentage of profits for more training – supporting entrepreneurship and beekeeping in Africa. African Bronze Honey is one of the most delicious foods on the planet produced from one of the least developed places in the world. Call it, “Empowerment in a bottle.”

Liz and Paul and the African Bronze Honey van

Progress and Achievements

The power one, the strength of many.

Since Dan’s humble beginnings in the Zambian bush, many great things have happened.  Dan and his company Forest Fruits Ltd. have successfully trained over 6000 independent beekeepers. They produce over 800 tonnes of exceptional organic forest honey each year. In an area where there is almost no employment and cash was non-existent, these efforts have transformed thousands of lives.

The beekeepers are trained and equipped for free and are taught numeracy and literacy. Earning money by beekeeping can mean a metal roof, a bicycle, books or school fees. They earn a reliable source of income from their own efforts, in their own environment with a positive environmental and social impact. Honey collected from wild bees is a practice as old as time. Dan’s idea was to use tradition and local assets to create a sustainable solution to poverty and unemployment. 

The idea is spreading and new beekeeping projects are starting up in countries like Tanzania, Uganda, Malawi, Rwanda and more. We're excited to say that soon you will also see organic, fair trade honeys from these countries in our store.

Sustainable, Organic, Fair Trade, Benefit

We are committed to sustainability... and that means sourcing only organic, sustainable products that also benefit the producers and the environment.

We are a Certified B Corporation and proud to have been named Best for the World in 2017 and 2018 – two years in a row! We're a approved member of the Fair Trade Federation since 2014. Our products are Certified Organic by EcoCert. 

In 2017, we won the Startup Canada Social Enterprise Award for Ontario. 

Changing the world… one bottle of honey at a time.

 

African Bronze Honey Company is a registered Canada Food Inspection Agency honey packer.